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Best 2018 Chevrolet Spark Flat Tow Setup - Base Plates

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Best 2018 Chevrolet Spark Flat Tow Setup - Base Plates

Ryan: Hey everybody, Ryan here at etrailer. Today, we're going to be taking a look at our best flat tow setup options for your 2018 Chevrolet Spark. So you're going to need a total of five main components needed to flat tow your Spark down the road behind your motor home. First one's going to be your base plate. Now, base plate's going to provide us with that solid and reliable connection point, that way we can hook our tow bar up to it. Tow bar is going to be that physical link that connects the front of your Spark to the back of your motor home.

The third main component is going to be safety cables. These are going to be there in the event of an unlikely disconnect. These are going to keep your Spark connected to the back of your motor home. The fourth main component is going to be tow bar wiring, and the wiring is going to transfer the lighting functions from the back of your motor home to the back of your Spark, keeping you safe and legal.And last but not least, the fifth main component is going to be a braking system. And the braking system is going to apply the brakes inside of your Chevy whenever you apply the brakes in your RV.

That's just going to help bring you to a more safe and predictable stop. And in some cases you may need a high-low adapter, which is this here. And what this is going to do is plug into your motor home's hitch and drop down the attachment point. That way your tow bar can ride nice and level and pull your Spark down the road correctly. Now, the way that you would figure that out is you want the attachment point here at your hitch and at the base plate to be within three inches.

That's kind of that safe zone there. So you would measure from the center of your pin hole here on your base plate to the center of your pin hole on your hitch, and that'll determine if you need that high-low adapter or not.So now that we know what main components we're going to need, let's kind of run through them one by one, and what we're using here today on our Spark. Let's go ahead and just start with the base plate. We're using the Roadmaster crossbar style base plate kit. It's going to have removable arms.

And honestly this would be my top pick for the Spark, and that's for a couple of different reasons. First one being it's going to have a really clean appearance whenever we're not all hooked up and set up to flat tow. So you're really not going to have to modify or alter the factory appearance of your Spark, which is always nice. More importantly though, I like the crossbar style because what it's going to do is raise our attachment point up higher off the ground, as compared to the direct connect style base plate kits.Those aren't going to use the crossbar, which is a little bit cleaner looking, but with the Spark riding so low to the ground, your tow bar is going to be all the way down here. And so that's really going to cause some problems with your motor home being up so high, you're probably going to need a very big high-low adapter. And not to mention when you're going to hook this up and disconnect it, you're going to have to bend over so far down to the ground, it's just more difficult to work with. And with the crossbar style, with it bringing that attachment point up higher, it's just going to make everything tow nicer and be easier to hook up and disconnect. So now let's go ahead and talk about the tow bar. So our customer actually had this one from a previous flat tow setup and chose to reuse it. which is perfectly fine.It's a Roadmaster Falcon 2, and it'll get the job done, but to be honest with you, I'm not too crazy about these. And that's primarily because they're a binding type tow bar. So when the arms are fully extended and locked into place, whenever you go to disconnect it, a lot of times they can bind up and it can be extremely difficult. You won't be able to pull the pins out and you'll really have to fight it. They do have these buttons up here that will release that tension, but a lot of times you're going to need to almost beat them with a hammer or pick up a special tool to release that pressure. So it can be really inconvenient. Last thing you want to do when you're at the campsite trying to enjoy yourself. The tow bar that I would recommend is the Roadmaster All Terrain.It looks really nice and it's a non-binding type tow bar. So when the arms are locked in, as opposed to having to fight them and deal with tools and free everything up, the All Terrain simply just has a lever and it releases that tension and it makes it super easy. So really convenient and a lot more manageable and easy to use. So let's go ahead and kind of talk about the safety cables. Now honestly, I really don't have a preference, but there's a few things to look out for when you're choosing a set of safety cables. One of them being the weight capacity, you want to make sure that they're going to be strong enough to handle the weight of your Spark. The other thing to pay attention to is the overall length of them. So you obviously want them long enough to be able to connect to the Spark to the back of your motor home and have some room in between so they can stretch out when you're going around turns and things like that.The other big deciding factor would be whether to get coiled cables, like we have here today, or straight cables. And that's really just going to depend on what tow bar you have. If your tow bar does not have channels in it for those safety cables like ours does today. And you can see we don't have any channels here. You're definitely going to want to get the coiled cables, that way they kind of have this spring action. They'll stay up off the ground when you're going straight. But when you go to hit them turns, they're going to stretch out and give you that extra length. The tow bars that have the channels, you're going to want the straight cables. That way you can utilize those channels, run your cables through there, and everything will look nice and clean and you'll use a tow bar like it's designed to be used.So that's really all there is to safety cables. And depending on the weight of your vehicle and the length you need, you really can't go wrong with any set, as long as they're appropriately matched up. As far as the wiring goes, today on our Spark we're using the Roadmaster bulb and socket kit. Now there's a incandescent bulb kit and an LED kit. We're using the LED, and that's what I would definitely recommend. LEDs shine a lot brighter and last a lot longer, they don't burn out nearly as fast. So with that being said though, the bulb and socket kit is usually something I wouldn't recommend. I kind of like the diode kits. But with these Sparks, the bulb and socket kit is kind of tried and true. We've had really good success with them. And so the way I look at is, why try to fix something that isn't broke On the Sparks, they're really reliable and they work out really well.So with that being said though, this is the kit that I would definitely recommend, especially compared to a magnetic lighting kit. Honestly, not a big fan of those at all. Those require you to stick lights on your vehicle, which could potentially damage your paint and things like that. And you're going to have to route wires every single time, drape them over the car whenever you want to hook up, same thing whenever you want to disconnect. And honestly, who wants to deal with that With the bulb and socket kit, once it's in, it's in and all you're going to have to do is plug your connector into the front and run it to the connector in the back of your motor home. So really simple and straightforward. Now, as far as the braking system goes, our customer actually has a portable style unit that they don't have with them today.But in my opinion, those braking systems, there's three big ones that I would definitely choose for my three favorites. If you're looking for a more permanent style braking system, one, I really like, I'm a big fan of the Stay-IN-Play. It's super easy to use. You more or less have to flip a switch, and it's very reliable. We've hardly had any issues at all with those. However, if your motor home has air brakes, I'd recommend the Air Force One, that's specifically designed for motor homes with air brakes. And again, is super easy to use, very reliable. And shouldn't give you any issues down the road, which is very important to me. Now, if you're looking for a portable style unit, one that you can take in and out of the car and set out of the way for the time being, or maybe if you change your towed vehicles a lot, you can take that braking system with you.And my favorite is the Blue Ox Patriot 3. It's relatively small in size, it's really lightweight so it's manageable, easy to set up. Compared to some of the other portable styled braking systems, which a little bit larger and more cumbersome. The Patriot 3, you more or less just set in the driver's side floorboard, clamp onto your brake pedal, hook up one wire and hit start. And that's really all there is to it, so anyone can figure it out and only takes a couple of minutes. So you're not dealing with it at the campsite, at nighttime and struggling. super easy to manage and figure out. But other than that, I know trying to figure out a flat tow setup can be a little bit overwhelming, but as long as you stick to those main components and kind of break them down one by one, it'll all fall into place. And that'll finish up our look at of our best flat tow setup options for your Chevy Spark. I hope you find this information useful, and it helps you determine which components will be best for your setup.

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